Anyone who grew up in the 1980s and 1990s, like me, will know what I'm talking about when I say that Bud Spencer and Terence Hill were the ultimate commercial for pasta and baked beans! In the dozen or so films they did together over the years, they were always eating something. I grew up with those two fellows airing on TV every single weekend. Apart from the fact that Bud Spencer, the hairy and chubby one, would always get into fights which he always won by hitting the other guys on the head, the only thing I will always remember is the hunger I got, watching those two eat. Bud would mostly eat piles and piles of pasta or meat, whereas Terence Hill would eat beans. I can't tell you a lot about the plots of the movies anymore, but I will never forget the appetite I felt for pasta and beans. This raw and messy way of devouring food stuck with me until this day.

The Harry Potter series is another excellent example of how food and beverages are described and included in the story in a mouthwatering and very tasty way. Who can ever forget the festive meals described at the beginning of most of the books as well as the Christmas dinners? Reading about them always gave me such a heart warming feeling, and although I have never tasted butterbeer or pumpkin juice, reading about it would always make me imagine the most incredible taste.

One thing I can never get used to, however, are descriptions of cooking scenes in books. Maybe it's due to the fact that I'm not much of a cook myself, but I often get impatient with lengthy descriptions of the protagonist standing in the kitchen and preparing a meal. I just can't imagine it correctly, I guess, or maybe it means I'm more on the consuming end of a meal instead of the preparation phase?

What I would really like to get behind is the reason why certain TV or book scenes make us want to eat with the protagonist, and sometimes we don't feel anything.

What makes for a good food scene in stories?